Cybersecurity Skeletons In Your Business’ Closet

Thomas Fox is president of Tech Experts, southeast Michigan’s leading small business computer support company.

Let’s dive into a topic that might give you the chills – cybersecurity skeletons in your company’s closet.

You may not have old skeletons hidden away in the basement, but there’s a good chance of cybersecurity vulnerabilities lurking in the shadows. Just waiting to wreak havoc.

You can’t fix what you can’t see. It’s time to shine a light on these hidden dangers, so you can take action to protect your business from potential cyber threats.

Here are some of the most common cybersecurity issues faced by small and mid-sized businesses:

Outdated software: The cobweb-covered nightmare

Running outdated software is like inviting hackers to your virtual Halloween party.

When software vendors release updates, they often include crucial security patches. These patches fix vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. Keep everything up to date to ensure your digital fortress is secure.

Weak passwords: The skeleton key for cybercriminals

If your passwords are weak, you might as well be handing out your office keys to cybercriminals.

Instead, create strong and unique passwords for all accounts and devices. Consider using a mix of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.

Unsecured Wi-Fi: The ghostly gateway

Ensure your Wi-Fi is password-protected. Make sure your router uses WPA2 or WPA3 encryption for an added layer of security. For critical business tasks, consider a virtual
private network (VPN). It can shield your data from prying eyes.

Lack of training: The haunting ignorance

Employee error is the cause of approximately 88% of all data breaches.

Without proper cybersecurity training, your staff might unknowingly fall victim to phishing scams. Or inadvertently expose sensitive information. Regularly educate your team about cybersecurity best practices, such as:
• Recognizing phishing emails
• Avoiding suspicious websites
• Using secure file-sharing methods

No data backups: The cryptic catastrophe

Imagine waking up to find your business’s data gone, vanished into the digital abyss. Without backups, this nightmare can become a reality.

Embrace the 3-2-1 rule. Have at least three copies of your data stored on two different media types. With one copy stored securely offsite.

No MFA: The ghoulish gamble

Adding multi-factor authentication (MFA) provides an extra layer of protection. It requires users to provide extra authentication factors, such as a one-time code sent by email or text, or passkey. This makes it much harder for cyber attackers to breach your accounts.

Ignoring mobile security: The haunted phones

Ensure that all company-issued devices have passcodes or biometric locks enabled. Consider implementing mobile device management (MDM) solutions.

These will enable you to enforce security policies.

Shadow IT: The spooky surprise

Shadow IT refers to the use of unauthorized applications within your business. It might seem harmless when employees use convenient tools they find online.

Regularly audit your systems to uncover any shadow IT lurking under cover.